April 27, 2010

Review: Mocha Capsules for Nescafé Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee and Hot Beverage System

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What do you get when you mix espresso, hot chocolate and milk together? You get a caffè mocha and the subject of our next review in the Dolce Gusto capsule series... their Mocha capsules. You first start with a mocha capsule which contains dark roast coffee and cocoa powder, then top everything off with a milk capsule. Yes, you read that correctly... Nescafé have apparently decided to use dark roast coffee instead of traditional espresso for these capsules and as for why, your guess is as good as ours. As in past reviews, we had to use the supplied cappuccino cup which came with our machine since we didn't have the clear mocha cup shown on the packaging.

The Mocha Capsules billed by Nescafé as an "Ultimate mix of coffee & dessert", they go on to describe "Hot chocolate and dark roasted coffee do a delicious duet. Full intensity of roasted coffee in a delightfully sweet chocolaty treat. A nice way to welcome in the morning or unwind after work". They go on to mention some crazy bit about "sharing with friends" but when we make single serve coffee drinks, we prefer to quote Family Guy's Peter Griffin by saying "Nyeh!! It's mine!!" (Besides, that would take the fun out of preparing our guests a full drink of their very own).

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Aroma starts off with mild notes of hot chocolate, then morphs between the scents of coffee and chocolate again while subtle scents of the milk capsule layer on top near the end of the brew process. The addition of both the cocoa powder & milk effectively eliminate any acidity and you wouldn't even know there was any present until getting light sour notes in the aftertaste. It was a bit difficult to determine the body since we were using an opaque porcelain cup, but once you cut through the milk froth, overall appearance seemed identical to the Chococino capsules we reviewed recently. We were expecting slightly darker shades of brown due to the presence of dark roast coffee but the results were actually lighter instead.


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Flavor was rather the opposite of what we were expecting... instead of a coffee-flavored hot chocolate, we almost ended up with a chocolate-flavored coffee. A unique yet somewhat disappointing experience and we suspect the fact that we used a different cup vs. Nescafé's mocha cup might be to blame.. a bit more experimenting would likely yield what we wanted. We think Nescafé could have probably gone the traditional route and used espresso instead of dark roast coffee and perhaps used a dark chocolate cocoa powder instead of milk chocolate. Mouth feel was smooth & silky but as with the chococino, we ended with chalky cocoa powder residue at the end of the cup.

  • Aroma – 8 – A constantly evolving mix of coffee, chocolate & milk. Changes as you drink through beverage.
  • Acidity – 6 – Mostly present in the aftertaste (which is a bit sour) but pretty much non-existent in the drink itself.
  • Body – 9 – The white milk crema gives way to a medium-brown chocolate body. Not exactly like what you see on the packaging but quite close.
  • Flavor – 8 – Not exactly what we were expecting but good nonetheless. Using espresso & dark chocolate could have gone a long way.
  • Mouth Feel – 8 – Smooth & silky throughout with the slightly chalky cocoa powder residue becoming more present as you reach the bottom.

Overall Rating: 89 - Good


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Can we make better mochas on our own if we wanted to? Of course, but you just can't beat the speed, simplicity and mess-free aspects of using Nescafé's Mocha capsules vs. making a mocha from scratch. We have yet to find anything which even comes close to this quality on the single serve coffee scene and have to admit that this is likely the best single serve mocha you're going to get until a better machine or better capsules come along. As with most Dolce Gusto capsules we've tried recently, these are definitely worth a try.

We would also like to point out that we purchased these capsules on our own for the purpose of this review.

Nescafé's Mocha capsules will work in all Dolce Gusto models and are available in 16-pack boxes (8 Mocha capsules + 8 Milk capsules) for $8.49 USD at Nescafé's www.dolcegustostore.com or Amazon.com. They're also available for $8.99 CAD at Nescafé's www.dolce-gusto.ca or various grocery stores across Canada (they were previously available online-only in Canada but we find no evidence of that on the Canadian site anymore).

Check out our full review of the Dolce Gusto single serve coffee machine here. We would like to note we purchased these capsules for the purpose of this review.

Read how we review and rate single serve coffee and other single serve coffee beverages here.

A special thanks to SH for providing this Single Serve Coffee staff review.

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Posted by Jay Brewer at April 27, 2010 7:55 AM

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